Phillies, Kevin Frandsen avoid arbitration with one-year deal

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Todd Zolecki of MLB.com reports that the Phillies and infielder Kevin Frandsen have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $900,000 contract. The deal includes performance bonuses.

Frandsen was arbitration-eligible for the second time this winter. The 31-year-old made a salary of $850,000 this past season while hitting .234/.296/.341 with five home runs and 26 RBI over 278 plate appearances.

After making starts at first base, second base and the hot corner this year, Frandsen figures to serve as an active utility player for Philadelphia again in 2014.

Texas Rangers fire manager Jeff Banister

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The Texas Rangers just announced that they have fired Jeff Banister as the team’s manager. Bench coach Don Wakamatsu has been named interim manager for the remainder of 2018 season.

Banister was in the last year of his contract with the club, but there was an option for 2019. Rangers brass, obviously, has decided to go in a different direction following what will be the club’s worst finish in Banister’s tenure. At the moment the Rangers are 64-88 and are assured of last place in the AL West.

Banister was hired before the 2015 season and led the Rangers to first place finishes in each of his first two seasons. The club fell to a disappointing third place and a 78-84 record last season, however, and this season the descent has continued. Injuries and under achievement has been the order of the day for the past two years and, with the career of Adrian Beltre nearing its end and the Rangers having been passed up by the Astros as the class of the division, a rebuild is in the club’s future.

Banister ends his reign as the Rangers’ skipper with a record of 325-313.